- His company, Think and Learn, valued at $ 5.7 billion, with Ravindran holding 21% shares
- Launched online learning app Baiju in 2015, with 3.5 million users, 24 lakh paid subscribers
- Byju returns in March this year, revenue expected to reach Rs 3000 crore by next year
Bengaluru Byju Ravindran (37), the founder and CEO of online education app Byju (BYJU), has become the country’s new billionaire. According to a Bloomberg report, Ravindran’s company Think and Learn raised $ 150 million (Rs 1,035 crore) this month. This brought the company’s valuation to $ 5.7 billion (Rs 39,330 crore). Ravindran holds more than 21% shares of the company. Think and Learn was founded by teacher Ravindran in 2011. In 2015, the major learning app Baiju was launched.
Ravindran Family holds 35% shares of Byju
Biju has 35 million subscribers. Out of these, there are 24 lakh paid users who pay fees from 10 thousand to 12 thousand rupees annually. By March this year, Byju had turned profitable. At the same time Ravindran started attracting long-term investors such as pension funds and sovereign wealth funds. Recently the Qatar Investment Authority has invested money in his company.
In order to retain his stake, Ravindran himself also bought shares in the last funding round of Byju. According to Bloomberg sources, Rabindran, wife and brother own around 35% shares of Byju.
Ravindran once said that he wants to do such a thing for the country’s education system that Mouse House (Disney) has done for entertainment. He has also included Disney’s Simba and Anna Character in his new learning app. Ravindran had said that Simba would attract them before they start learning through the app.
The growth of online learning in the country is increasing due to the availability of cheap smartphones and internet plans. Ravindran says that Byju is growing rapidly in online learning. Its revenue is expected to more than double to Rs 3,000 crore by March 2020. The growth of the online learning industry has caught the attention of Naspers Ventures, Tencent Holdings, Secoia Capital and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.
Baiju catches the attention of children by making the content small and attractive. Ravindran also wants to strengthen his grip in English speaking countries. He announced recently that Biju will start service in the US next year in association with the Walt Disney Company.
When I started filling classes, I started teaching in the stadium
Born in a coastal village in South India, Rabindran’s parents were school teachers. Ravindran did not feel like in school. He often went to play football. Later studied at home. Ravindran became an engineer after completing his studies and started helping the students in preparing for the exam. Students in his classes grew so much that he started teaching thousands of students simultaneously in the stadium. In this way, Ravindran became a celebrity teacher.